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Oil, gas not about to take back seat as Nigeria’s economic main stay as minister reveals new stream of income

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Barring unforeseen occurrence circumstances Nigerian oil and gas sector will witness investments to the tune of $5 billion, says Nigeria’s minister of State, Petroleum Resources (Oil), Senator Heineken Lokpobiri.

As much as the news is music to many ears in Nigeria, it also implies that the country is not winning the struggle to win its economy from oil.

The Minister gave the hint on Tuesday at a 3-day, 2024 Oil and Gas Sector Retreat, with the theme: ‘Building Synergy for the Enhanced Development in the oil and gas sector’ being organized by the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, in Abuja.

Lokpobiri said that he saw a situation where the Petroleum sector would surpass its 2024 target with regard to ramping up production and revenue increase.

According to him,  federal government is working very hard to restore the confidence of the global investment community to come back and invest in Nigeria, stressing that he had signed a couple of modular refineries licenses this even without knowing those behind the companies.

“Let me also say here that I have signed a couple of modular refineries without knowing who owns them.

“I don’t want to know the owner of those companies, and I have also warned that as I didn’t know them before I signed your license, I don’t want to know you before I cancel it.

“We need to liberalize Nigeria  processes. So that nobody needs to know the Minister before you get your documents signed” he said.

He noted that government has tackled the issues of insecurity and  vandalization in a bid to ensure stability and investment friendly environment.

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The Minister of State further charged operators in the Nigerian Petroleum industry to work together in order to align policies that would ultimately ramp up crude oil production and raise the country’s revenue.

Lokpobiri warned that it would be very embarrassing if the turnaround maintenance and revamping of the refineries are concluded but there is nowhere to get feedstock.

In his remarks during the event, the Minister of State Petroleum Resources (Gas), Hon.  Ekperikpe Ekpo, emphasized the need for Nigeria to prioritize infrastructure development to support the exploration, production, processing, and distribution of gas.

“First and foremost, we must prioritize infrastructure development to support the exploration, production, processing, and distribution of gas.

This includes investments in gas pipelines, liquefied natural gas (LNG) facilities, and gas processing plants to ensure efficient transportation and monetization of our gas resources.

By expanding our gas infrastructure network, we can enhance access to gas markets, stimulate investment in upstream exploration and production activities, and create new opportunities for economic growth and diversification.

“Furthermore, ensuring the widespread penetration of gas nationwide is essential to realizing its full potential as a transition fuel.

This entails not only increasing domestic gas production but also promoting the adoption of gas as a cleaner alternative for power generation, industrial processes, transportation, and household use.

Initiatives such as the “Decade of Gas Initiative” are instrumental in driving gas utilization across various sectors through targeted interventions, infrastructure development, and policy incentives.

“I am confident that the discussions and deliberations from this Retreat will not only be for the sake of discussion but will be a call to action required to reposition the Nigerian Gas Sector for optimal performance.

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“I believe that together, we will surmount these challenges and forge a resilient gas sector, thereby advancing our nation’s status as a beacon of progress and prosperity” he said.

 

 


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